President and CEO, Ola Rollén, spoke at his firm’s flagship HxGN LIVE convention on shifting ahead in a world radically modified by the COVID-19 pandemic, discussing far-ranging matters and answering questions on key megatrends dealing with world industries.

Final week in Las Vegas, Hexagon AB held its first flagship HxGN LIVE convention since 2019, the place it introduced collectively prospects, companions, and colleagues from world wide to debate challenges and options to expertise challenges.

The convention opened with the keynote, “What Stands within the Means Turns into the Means,” from Hexagon’s President and CEO, Ola Rollén. His keynote set the scene for the convention with a message of resilience, accountability, and thought management, specializing in shifting ahead in a world radically modified by the COVID-19 pandemic.


Topcon: next level precision

The primary full day of the convention started with a breakfast briefing by Rollén, the place he mentioned far-ranging matters on key tendencies dealing with world industries and answered questions from about 100 registered media and analysts.

The primary development he highlighted is the transfer from buy to subscription. Rollén says that his firm’s airborne sensors are an excellent instance of this, the place a hardware-traditional gross sales enterprise is being transformed right into a digital subscription enterprise.

“We sometimes don’t promote that many sensors anymore, however we promote an terrible lot of information that the sensors are capturing by way of our partnership community for corporations flying across the globe,” he mentioned.

The shift from digital twins to good digital realities is one other development, with many Hexagon executives elaborating upon through the week.

Rollén says {that a} digital twin is “actually only a digital illustration of one thing…, however once we enter into good digital realities, we want [data in} real time. We need constant updates. It’s a very different level of sophistication.”

Another trend is the shift from the automation of the past half-century to autonomy.

“Autonomy is something completely different, where we cut the human dimension out of a technological system executing something, which means that it’s self-sustaining, it’s communicating with other computers,” he said. “Automation actually needs human input, but these [autonomy] techniques are fully autonomous. And typically they’re self-healing when issues go fallacious.”

The push to create a renewable and fossil-free society is the fourth massive development.

“That’s tremendous vital for Hexagon, the place we see that we are able to construct a distinct segment, which is gonna be very worthwhile and really highly effective,” mentioned Rollén.

One instance of that is the primary funding by R-evolution, Hexagon’s enterprise enterprise led by CEO Erik Josefsson centered on profitably reinventing how business can tackle complicated environmental challenges. It’s first enterprise was the acquisition of a 40-ha website in Archidona, Spain, to digitalize its photo voltaic power manufacturing.

Hexagon’s R-evolution is digitalizing photo voltaic manufacturing in Spain.

“What we use it for, aside from producing electrical energy, is to check new gear,” mentioned Rollén.
That gear contains the Leica BLK2FLY autonomous UAV (unmanned aerial car) laser scanner and Leica BLK ARC ground-oriented autonomous laser scanning module.

“The ARC is definitely patrolling that space,” he mentioned. “And the BK2FLY is monitoring the photo voltaic panels. It’s one of the vital vital issues once you run the photo voltaic park is to have your panels mud free, and the BLK2fly can measure the mud. It’s a easy factor, however it really might scale back the yield within the photo voltaic park by as much as 20%.”

Leica BLK2FLY is an autonomous flying laser scanner.

A two-speed world

At the next strategic degree, the Hexagon crew is monitoring what it calls “a two-speed world,” capitalizing on segments within the world economic system that can develop quick and focusing much less on outdated industries that ultimately are going to die out. The speed of change in progress between the 2 can be impacted by socio-economic impacts across the globe.

“We’ve a really peculiar state of affairs within the world economic system,” mentioned Rollén. “Once we lifted all of the restrictions from the pandemic, we first had a surge in demand, which prompted a variety of bottlenecks within the industrial system. As that was subsiding, we have now the battle in Ukraine, the place we now see the meals and power disaster.”

Opposite to the believes of some financial consultants, Rollén doesn’t assume that the COVID disaster confirmed that provide chains are weak.

“The provision chains had been sturdy going into COVID,” he mentioned. “What occurred was that we stayed at dwelling. We began watching TV, we performed video games. We did a variety of stuff on-line that drew the demand for semiconductors. And that simply occurred to coincide with one of many largest semiconductor factories burning. So, what occurs when provide is lowered and demand is elevated? You get shortages. and that’s what the worldwide economic system has suffered ever since.”

Within the quick time period, he appears for the worldwide economic system to be unstable, “however for the long term, we imagine that we would return to a low inflationary surroundings. After which the issues which are actually going to develop is new applied sciences.”

Nonetheless, he believes new expertise deployment has been a problem for world industries.
“We’re so poor within the deployment of our applied sciences at present as a society that we should always actually form up and guarantee that the yield charges in something that we do turn into higher,” mentioned Rollén. “And it goes for something from meals to grease or no matter we use on this planet. That’s the reply.”

He believes that expertise could be a facilitator to launch supply-chain bottlenecks. He cited autonomy utilized to the transportation business.

“I imagine that autonomous automobiles and autonomous vans might make an immense distinction in the best way we transfer items throughout nations and so forth,” he mentioned. “That’s going to be a recreation changer.”

Nonetheless, he thinks one of many greatest challenges on the trail from automation to extra autonomous autos and the related powertrain-electrification path that almost all corporations are pursuing is battery life.

“We’ve kind of all of the navigation we have to make a [vehicle] navigate in a shopping center or to your letterbox,” he mentioned. “I feel [the challenge is] battery energy together with the system engineering. We’d like sturdy robots that may deal with issues like rain, snow, sleet, and so forth. Climate goes to be a problem, to create applied sciences that can perform even when the climate is dangerous.”

Worthwhile tech pursuits

In its yearly technique conferences, Hexagon is now what it is going to be launching in seven and eight years. He guarantees that there can be “important growth in expertise within the subsequent 5 years” from Hexagon, hinting that there can be extra improvements just like the collaboration with Boston Dynamics on Spot and the brand new flying laser scanner drone. However he’s not satisfied that the longer term is all about software program.

“I don’t assume the longer term is software program pushed,” mentioned Rollén. “I feel that is the height of the software program period. The world is turning into more and more sophisticated. It’s going to be true excessive tech to evolve in a state of affairs the place we automate the chores that we do in our on a regular basis lives. That’s going to require {hardware}, sensors, and software program fused into an answer.”

He’s bullish that a lot of the brand new expertise pursuits can be worthwhile, and he’s searching for Hexagon’s new R-evolution progress and enterprise centered unit to show it. The unit’s first enterprise, the Spanish photo voltaic mission, is producing round a 20% return on capital deployed.

“It’s one of many extra worthwhile companies we purchased,” he mentioned. “The entire concept with R-evolution is it needs to be self-funding. It needs to be a worthwhile enterprise to enter ventures to save lots of the world.”

R-evolution’s subsequent important enterprise entails efforts to map the threatened seagrass meadows of the Caribbean islands, starting with the coastal waters of the Bahamas. In collaboration with Beneath The Waves, a non-profit group devoted to defending marine environments, the mission leverages Hexagon’s airborne bathymetric LiDAR applied sciences to detect, map, and seize vital particulars in regards to the important habitat, together with its extent and composition.

Whereas the initiatives of R-evolution thus far have a transparent inexperienced focus, Rollén says Hexagon is seeking to assist any new and present prospects from any business—together with these labeled by some as “dangerous environmentally”—turn into extra sustainable.

“Our view is it’s not about being good or dangerous,” mentioned Rollén, referring to business labels. “Are you going to make use of oil 50 years from now? Yeah, after all we’re. How are you going to get plastics? How do you are taking an oil tanker or a giant cargo ship from Hong Kong to Europe? Do you construct a giant battery and cargo that onto the ship? I imply, you wouldn’t be capable of carry any cargo in it.”

He says that sure areas of the worldwide economic system are at all times going to be oil-dependent.

“We simply have to determine a solution to not waste that oil, as a result of…it’s not about whether or not we use oil or not use oil, it’s about how we use it,” Rollén concluded.



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